Zelda: Breath of the Wild 2D Tribute Shut Down By Nintendo (Update)

It's a shame, but we all saw it coming.


Update: WinterDrak has taken to Twitter to say that the game will continue development, just with different assets. "The game isn't dead, I just won't be using the Zelda characters. It will live on," he said when asked what would happen to copies that people had purchased. He also said that the naming and deliberate use of assets was intentional to help get publicity for the project. "I'd rather have lots of people enjoy the nostalgia than keep it a tiny project that isn't a fangame," he said.

Original Story: A 2D NES-style fan tribute to The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild has had the breath squeezed out of it by a Nintendo letter of unhappiness.

Breath of the NES, a project by fan WinterDrake, had created the game as homage to the original Legend of Zelda, something that Nintendo itself showed off at GDC this year as a prototype for how Breath of the Wild began. It had already gone through several iterations of his project, and was drawing fan interest for its nostalgia, although a lot of the Breath of the Wild parts had not been added yet. Now, it appears WinterDrake won't get the chance to finish it.

"Looks like wasn't a big fan of Breath of the NES!" WinterDrake said in a Twitter post, adding a copy of the letter he received from Nintendo. It's a classic Cease & Desist letter designed to continue to protect Nintendo's IP. And just that quickly, the download for the game has been pulled.

While this is another sad case of a fun project pulled down by the corporate "bully," it really should not come as a surprise. Nintendo is notoriously consistent about going after anything that might infringe on any of its IPs, even if said projects are free. It is easy to bash Nintendo for banging on the little guy, but fans who begin these projects run the risk and many may even go in knowing this is an eventuality.

Note to future creators: Keep it original. Developers and publishers don't like you messing with their properties, no matter how well-intentioned.

You can take a look at Nintendo's own 2D Breath of the Wild prototype in this video from GDC 2017. Skip ahead to 18 minutes.

Contributing Editor
From The Chatty
  • reply
    May 1, 2017 8:30 AM

    John Keefer posted a new article, Zelda: Breath of the Wild 2D NES Tribute Shut Down By Nintendo

    • reply
      May 1, 2017 8:49 AM


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      May 1, 2017 8:50 AM

      Did anyone not expect this to happen?

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      May 1, 2017 8:55 AM

      Yeah, that wasn't going to stay that way for long.

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        May 1, 2017 6:36 PM

        considering they shut down streams and lets plays of their games until really recently, yeah...

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      May 1, 2017 9:00 AM

      Let's not act like Nintendo is a bad guy for refusing to ignore a man who was profiting off their IP. The moment he started taking "donations" it was the beginning of the end.

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      May 1, 2017 9:12 AM

      It'll be around again, just with a different skin.

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        May 1, 2017 10:29 AM

        Yeah, looks like he is changing names / graphics, and it will be back.

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      May 1, 2017 9:54 AM

      Didn't see that coming...

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      May 1, 2017 10:12 AM

      The kind of unexpected twist you'd expect from a M Night script

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      May 1, 2017 10:15 AM

      Wh0a, I just saw a post disappear.

      I see dead posts.

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      May 1, 2017 10:22 AM

      Whatever happened with that Metroid 2 remake? I don't remember hearing about that getting pulled.

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        May 1, 2017 10:38 AM

        As soon as it officially got released it was dma'd

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          May 1, 2017 10:56 AM

          Yep. Should still be able to torrent it though.

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            May 1, 2017 11:26 AM

            It was damned amazing too. I had fun playing it. But I 100% understand why they made him pull it. If anything, it was cool of them to let him go so far as release it to the internet before they pulled the plug

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              May 1, 2017 11:48 AM

              I kinda feel like they did that on purpose.

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                May 1, 2017 4:15 PM

                Why doesn't BIG N just hire people like this guy for 500k to make updated versions of games for the Switch?

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                  May 1, 2017 6:11 PM

                  Once they've started working on the project there's a lot of weird shit legally around using their work even if it's bought and paid for I think not to mention Nintendo has been quite the prude until very recently in regards to who touches their properties.

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                    May 1, 2017 7:00 PM

                    Yeah, if anything Nintendo letting it go as long as they could before putting their people on it shows they appreciated the project and the fact it was really good and he wasn't charging a cent for it went a long way too. But, end of the day they had to pull it down to protect their IP, but they gave it time to escape into the wild.

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          May 1, 2017 6:56 PM

          Yep he even released some physical copies

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      May 1, 2017 7:48 PM

      I played what was available about a week ago to the end. It isn't really anything special. Maybe a polished Newgrounds alpha, but zero connection with any mechanic in botw.

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      May 1, 2017 8:55 PM

      I'm going to interpret this as a sign that Nintendo is working on 2d Zelda Maker based on that internal prototype they built.

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      May 1, 2017 9:02 PM

      So with the updates, the guy just basically tried to piggy back off a popular game to get people to buy his game that he's going to change as soon as he was threatened with a lawsuit?

      That's fucked up, don't support that shit.

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